LISBON, July 11 (Reuters) - Portugal must continue setting an example to Europe in terms of its lauded fiscal consolidation efforts despite serious risks to the adjustment process agreed under the terms of an EU/IMF bailout, Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho said on Wednesday.
“Above all, we cannot think that our problems should be solved by others,” he told parliament in his State of the Nation address. “With our effort and participation we have to continue giving an example to Europe, and we can tell it that we can overcome difficulties and be responsible.”
Passos Coelho said the centre-right government’s austerity efforts over the past year have already brought more favourable financing conditions and there can be no veering off this path while the country is still mired in “an unprecedented crisis”.
He reiterated that the government will take all measures necessary to meet its public deficit targets this year and next and will come up with alternative measures after a top court ruled last week against one of the austerity steps intended to help Lisbon achieve the 2013 target.